What’s Their Secret? Two People Who Are Doing This Pandemic Well

Are you one of those people who have stayed upbeat and resilient during this unprecedented time in history?

I live in a place that’s easy to be in quarantine. It’s easy to get organic veggies because I live surrounded by farms.

It’s safe in my house, I can order groceries online. I can go for a walk, I have a garden.

I am privileged.

And yet, on some days I’m fighting the urge to scream because I can’t really go anywhere. Or hug my grandchildren. Or I get bored with being home. 

These are champagne problems.

Two people I know are positive and upbeat despite living in very tough circumstances.

Theirs are not champagne problems.

One of them is my eldest son, Andrew

 Right now Andrew is stuck on a tiny, nearly deserted island about halfway between Hawaii and Australia. 

Andrew’s shipping business is located in Vanuatu, another island nation in the South Pacific.

His business involves moving construction materials and heavy machinery...

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Part 2: How not to panic when you’re stuck in lockdown in a foreign country

If you missed Part 1 of our adventures, you can read it here.

Back in Auckland and the country moves into lockdown

On Tuesday 24 March we landed in Auckland from Christchurch, a bit harried and very grateful. But our flight back to San Francisco wasn't for another five days, and New Zealand was preparing for total lockdown.

It was an hour by hour world we were in and no one seemed to know what would happen next.

Would planes fly? The response from everyone we spoke to was that no planes would fly in or out once the country was in lockdown, within the next 48 hours.   

We decided to go directly to the Air New Zealand counter and see if we could change our reservations to an earlier flight - maybe we could even get a flight out that night. (As stressed as we had been, it didn’t deter Thom from taking pictures.)

We had another surprise as we approached the international terminal. There was a long line at the...

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Stayin' Alive on the 4th of July

As we celebrate another of our nation’s birthday this Independence Day, I am reminded of a July 4th post I wrote back in 2011 when my son, Rob, was deployed to Afghanistan. Rob is home now, but re-reading the post today brings all those feelings back to me. It also makes me feel a deep gratitude that he returned with his body, and his psyche, intact. I will forever feel grateful for that.

I still feel connected to those who served in that faraway country.  I am privileged to have worked as a counselor with Marines, Soldiers, Airmen, and Sailors who were deployed and returned from Afghanistan and Iraq. Their stories are chilling, young men who know the horrors of war and are still trying to make sense of it all.

As we celebrate this 4th of July

 I hope that all of us remember our service members & their families.

The ones who are still deployed, still in danger, the ones who are struggling, and the many who are wounded warriors.

Think for a moment about the ones...

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